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Constitutional Law

2010

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Florida Coastal School of Law

Articles 1 - 2 of 2

Full-Text Articles in Law

Textualist Canons: Cabining Rules Or Predilective Tools, Stephen Durden Jan 2010

Textualist Canons: Cabining Rules Or Predilective Tools, Stephen Durden

Stephen Durden

Justice Scalia proclaims homage to the “dead” Constitution. Justice Brennan honors the “living” Constitution. Others believe in “a partially living and partially dead Constitution.” But, whichever moniker selected, constitutional analysis remains (to the interpreter) personal; however, personal does not necessarily mean irrational or even singular (i.e., that no one else agrees with the interpretation). Rather, personal means that no matter how narrow the interpretational method, an interpreter of the Constitution inevitably makes personal choices when using any interpretational method - choices not required by, or perhaps even inconsistent with, the chosen interpretational method. This Article uses canons of construction to ...


Partial Textualism, Stephen Durden Jan 2010

Partial Textualism, Stephen Durden

Stephen Durden

This Article seeks to demonstrate that plain meaning textualists do not apply plain meaning textualism to the entire Constitution. Instead, plain meaning textualists indulge their personal predilections and apply the doctrine of “partial textualism,” which selectively applies plain meaning textualism to only part of, rather than the entire, Constitution. Partial textualism destroys any possible fairness value to plain meaning textualism. Indeed, such an approach is entirely inconsistent with the goals of plain language textualism. Through examining the Takings Clause, this Article demonstrates that a plain meaning textualist will commonly apply plain meaning textualism to a part of the Constitution that ...